What’s the buzz from the world of sports? Here are some items that will have people talking:
The NFC and AFC championship games have not even been played yet, but mock National Football League drafts are showing up on the blogosphere.
Russ Lande of Sporting News sees it this way: 1. Colts, Andrew Luck; 2. Rams, Matt Kalil, offensive tackle from Southern Cal; 3. Vikings, Justin Blackmon, wide receiver from Oklahoma State; 4. Browns, Robert Griffin III, quarterback from Baylor; 5. Buccaneers, Riley Reiff, offensive tackle from Iowa.
Lande, a former NFL scout, has the Seahawks taking outside linebacker Zach Brown from North Carolina.
About Brown, Lande writes: “K.J. Wright was solid as a rookie this season, but he’s not an elite linebacker. Brown is an explosive player who can contribute as both a linebacker and pass rusher.’’
The blogosphere is pretty mixed on the Pineda-for-Jesus Montero trade. A couple of interesting points were made: 1) Pineda had a 4.73 ERA in nine starts against the AL East in 2011; 2) Losing Safeco Field hurts Pineda, but with the Yankees’ better hitting, he does not have to near-perfect every start.
As Jayson Stark called it: “Two young studs with star power. No money factor. A pure, old-time baseball trade.’’
The other player Seattle got, 24-year-old right-hander Hector Noesi, also has a high upside, according to reports. In 2011, Noesi went 2-2 for the Yankees in 56 innings including two starts. He had a 4.47 ERA. There also are rumors of the M’s seeking veteran pitchers Edwin Jackson or Roy Oswalt to make up for the loss of Pineda while young talent in the farm system matures.